[The following is a rewrite of a document that can be found here - http://www.judgesguild.com/pdf/thunderhold.pdf. Alterations were made, anticipating a campaign I had once proposed running.]
History of Thunderhold
The Dwarfs of Thunderhold originated in the Majestic Vastness, or Majestatisk Vidstrackthet, deep in the Majestic Mountains. They were forced from their ancestral home by eight dragons led by the ancient wyrm Analegorn approximately 450 years ago. Most of the displaced dwarfs resettled to the north in the region of the Sunstone Caverns, or Solsting Mycket. Here they found the ground rich with gemstones and mithral, but had to fight for the region from the forces of the Gnole King. The dwarfs quickly took control of the underworld and fought with the gnoles only for control of the surface land.
The gnoles had built their kingdom with the help of the Moonrakers, an orichalan tribe of humans who had taught the gnoles to build castles. Relations with the gnoles had broken by the time the dwarfs arrived, and the humans and dwarfs soon found themselves allies in trade and defense. One Moonraker, a wizard named Lychin, still favored the old alliance with the gnoles and with the help of his own minotaur minions rallied the gnoles against the new allies. The dwarfs defeated Lychin’s forces and the wizard fled, though Lychin continued to plague the dwarfs for decades afterwards.
Zephrus Draggroder became King of the Dwarfs of Askabevara, or Thunderhold. One of his first actions was to establish ties to the nearby City State of the Invincible Overlord, made easier by the Overlord’s then-recent problems with dragons in his northwest territory. In return, the Overlord recognized Zephrus as a tributary king and gave him a vote in the Senate. Thunderhold and the City State maintain close ties to this day, with Thunderhold exporting gems, mercenary troops, armor, and workers – in roughly that order of importance – in exchange for importing wood, food, and finished goods.
In honor of their alliance, Moonrakers were allowed to live in Thunderhold, and more humans followed. Today, some 600 pureblood descendents of the Moonrakers remain, with the majority of humanity being mixed orichalan-tharbrian.
The dwarfs had venerated only Geb, an ancient god of earth, and Kazadarum, the first dwarf. Mankind added worship of Vulcan the Smith, Dunatis the Castellan, Rosmerta the Fire Goddess, and Cybele and Demeter, the goddesses of nature untamed and tamed respectively.
Thirty-two years ago, a powerful winged construct that appeared to have been sent by the gods soared over Thunderhold and crashed in the fields beyond. The construct, called Foxbat, survived mostly intact. One limb of Foxbat was said to be given to the Overlord, but the rest is in the keeping of King of Thunderhold. It is also believed that Foxbat carried gunpowder or the secret of gunpowder, because two years later when the Axe Banner Legion of Thunderhold went to drive a tribe of hill giants out of its western reaches, they went armed with arquebuses.